Homily of the Apostolic Nuncio Chapel of the Apostolic Nunciature Saturday, 27 October 2018
Gospel: Luke 13:1-9
We are meditating on the long journey from Galilee to Jerusalem and which takes almost half of Luke’s Gospel. In this part Luke places most of the information on the life and teaching of Jesus.
“At that time some people arrived and told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with that of the their sacrifices.” This is how the news of the massacre which Pilate, the Roman Governor, ordered regarding some Samaritan pilgrims had reached Jesus. To assuage their conscience, many defend themselves and say, “It is their fault!”
Jesus has a different opinion. He seeks to invite to conversion and to change.
Jesus comments on another situation: a thunderstorm knocked down the tower of Siloam killing eighteen people who were seeking shelter under it. The typical comment was “punishment from God!”. Jesus repeats, “I tell you ‘no’, but unless you repent you will perish as they did.” They were not converted, they did not change, and forty years later Jerusalem was destroyed and many people died, being killed in the Temple like the Samaritans and many people died under the debris or rubble of the walls of the city. Jesus tried to warn them, but the request for peace was not accepted.
The following parable serves to make people think and discover God’s project. In the parable, the landlord of the vine is God, the Father. The vinedresser who intercedes on behalf of the vine is Jesus. He pleads with the Father to extend the space, the time of conversion.